The House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health Dec. 9 held a hearing to examine legislative proposals related to health care and treatment. Among other bills, the committee examined the Title VIII Nursing Workforce Reauthorization Act of 2015 (H.R. 2713) and the effect it would have on the nursing workforce.
In her opening testimony, American Association of Colleges of Nursing President and CEO Deborah Trautman, Ph.D., R.N, discussed the important role Title VIII programs have in providing a “common-sense solution to address the workforce pipeline,” and added that these programs “promote practice in areas of national need.”
Ranking Member Gene Green (D – Texas) mentioned the shortage the nursing workforce faces in the coming decades with one of the biggest contributing factors being a lack of nursing education faculty members. Dr. Trautman highlighted a program through Title VIII that advances doctoral education for nurses to support and encourage future nurse faculty.
Bill author Rep. Lois Capps (D – Calif.) discussed the importance of diversifying the nursing workforce to prepare for the health care system of the future. In addition, she highlighted Title VIII programs that support nursing diversity. Dr. Trautman followed with the progress that has been made throughout the nursing workforce, and mentioned that holistic review is one example of what they are using to help diversify the workforce.
Title VIII of the Public Health Service Act has supported nursing education and workforce programs for 52 years. The Title VIII programs were last reauthorized in 2010.